Sherman Alexie, an Eastern Washington native and popular writer, canceled most of his planned book tour for the rest of the year.

He was scheduled to speak at the Bing Theater on Aug. 5 in Spokane.

Alexie, who recently lost his mother, had planned the tour to publicize his recent book, You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me. The book features stories about his late mother, and Alexie wrote in a bittersweet open letter to his fans that he was taking time off from touring to grieve.

“I can only apologize again for my unexpected retreat. And I thank you, over and over again, for your time, energy, and understanding,” Alexie wrote in the letter.

You can read the full, thoughtful letter from Alexie here.